After an unlikely and inspirational 2016 AFL Premiership victory, the Western Bulldogs have fallen back into old habits.
With a significant portion of their flag-winning side now either retired or playing elsewhere, there are big questions over whether the Dogs can climb back into finals contention in the near future.
What does the season ahead hold for the 2016 premiers? Let’s take a look at the latest AFL odds and futures markets for the upcoming season.
About the Western Bulldogs
|Home ground:||Etihad Stadium|
|Premierships:||2 – 1954, 2016|
|2018 ladder finish:||13th|
Best bookmakers to bet on the Western Bulldogs
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Updated Western Bulldogs futures betting
|2019 Premiership||Make Finals||Top Four||Brownlow Odds||Rising Star Odds||Coleman Odds|
|Jan||$34||$3||$9||M Bontempelli $31||–||–|
|Feb||$34||$3.75||$14||M Bontempelli $34||B Smith $17||–|
|Mar||$41||$3.75||$14||M Bontempelli $34||B Smith $21||–|
|Apr||$51||$3.50||$13||M Bontempelli $13||B Smith $21||A Naughton $101|
Best Western Bulldogs bets for the 2019 AFL season
Where are the best Western Bulldogs bets in the AFL futures markets that matter?
Click on the tabs below to get more analysis on these markets:
- What has happened to the Western Bulldogs since their 2016 premiership breakthrough? The mood around the club has grown febrile over the past two years and their on-field performances have suffered as a result. The squad looks unbalanced, especially in the key positions, and it is hard to see them mounting any kind of challenge for the 2019 title.
- The saving grace for the Dogs is their impressive midfield group. Bontempelli, Dunkley, Hunter, Liberatore, Macrae, McLean and Wallis are good enough to keep the wooden spoon at bay, but does the team have enough quality at either end to push into finals contention? No, is the short answer.
- The Bulldogs are not lacking in standout midfielders, so it would be no surprise if a few of them polled well on Brownlow Medal night. Josh Dunkley had a strong finish to 2018 and Marcus Bontempelli is a bona fide star, but Jack Macrae is the best ball-winner at the club and could go close this year if he avoids injury.
- There are a couple of Dogs among the top 20 contenders for the AFL Rising Star. The best of those is Bailey Smith, who went at pick seven in last year’s national draft. Lewis Young impressed in defence in the latter half of 2018 and remains eligible for nomination this season.
- Don’t include any Bulldogs in your Coleman Medal betting picks this year. It isn’t even an option at Sportsbet, where not a single Dog is quoted for the league goalkicking award.
Western Bulldogs 2019 AFL fixture
|1||Sydney Swans||Marvel Stadium||Saturday, March 23||7:25pm AEDT|
|2||Hawthorn Hawks||MCG||Sunday, March 31||3:20pm AEDT|
|3||Gold Coast Suns||Marvel Stadium||Sunday, April 7||2:20pm AEST|
|4||Collingwood Magpies||MCG||Friday, April 12||7:50pm AEST|
|5||Carlton Blues||Marvel Stadium||Sunday, April 21||1:10pm AEST|
|6||Fremantle Dockers||Optus Stadium||Saturday, April 27||6:10pm AWST|
|7||Richmond Tigers||Marvel Stadium||Saturday, May 4||7:25pm AEST|
|8||Brisbane Lions||Mars Stadium||Saturday, May 11||1:45pm AEST|
|9||Geelong Cats||GMHBA Stadium||Saturday, May 18||4:35pm AEST|
|10||North Melbourne Kangaroos||Marvel Stadium||Saturday, May 25||2:10pm AEST|
|11||West Coast Eagles||Optus Stadium||Sunday, June 2||3:20pm AWST|
|13||Carlton Blues||Marvel Stadium||Saturday, June 15||7:25pm AEST|
|14||Collingwood Magpies||Marvel Stadium||Sunday, June 23||3:20pm AEST|
|15||Port Adelaide Power||Adelaide Oval||Saturday, June 29||7:10pm ACST|
|16||Geelong Cats||Marvel Stadium||Saturday, July 6||7:25pm AEST|
|17||Melbourne Demons||Marvel Stadium||Sunday, July 14||3:20pm AEST|
|18||St Kilda Saints||Marvel Stadium||Sunday, July 21||4:40pm AEST|
|19||Fremantle Dockers||Marvel Stadium||Sunday, July 28||1:10pm AEST|
|20||Brisbane Lions||The Gabba||Sunday, August 4||4:40pm AEST|
|21||Essendon Bombers||Marvel Stadium||Saturday, August 10||7:25pm AEST|
|22||GWS Giants||Sydney Showground||Sunday, August 18||3:20pm AEST|
|23||Adelaide Crows||Mars Stadium||TBA||TBA|
Bulldogs players to watch in 2019
How many more chances can the Bulldogs give big Tom Boyd? Everything has gone wrong since his star turn in the 2016 AFL Grand Final and one can’t help but think if he doesn’t deliver this year, the former Giant will have to seek employment elsewhere in 2020.
Liberatore is another whose fortunes have soured since the 2016 premiership win. The father-son recruit was one of the best inside midfielders in the competition back then, so Bulldogs fans can only hope he rediscovers that kind of form before it is too late.
Dunkley has played a variety of roles in his short career, but in the latter half of 2018 he emerged as a reliable run-with player who can win stacks of his own ball. He finished the year as one of the AFL’s form midfielders and looks poised for a big 2019.
Western Bulldogs records
Most matches: Brad Johnson – 364 (1994-2010)
Most goals kicked in one match: Kelvin Templeton – 15
Most Best & Fairest awards: Scott West – 7
Most goals in a season: Kelvin Templeton – 118
Most career goals: Simon Beasley – 575
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